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Country News - 2004

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Tardy farmers risk future payments

Thursday 22 April 2004

HUNDREDS of Yorkshire farmers, already shell-shocked by new EU rules, are risking future subsidy payments by failing to return maps showing the extent of their land holdings.

Under the new rules of single farm payments, farm subsidies will be based on acreage rather than the amount of food produced – a measure to cut over-production – and all farms have been asked to check and send back maps of their farms supplied by the Rural Land Register Service.

But, says the Country Land and Business Association, many have failed to do so despite three reminders. If they are not returned by April 30, the association warns, the registry will assume they are accurate – thus fixing all future payments.

"This is an oversight that could result in lower payments," says Yorkshire CLA director Dorothy Fairburn. "With the future Single Farm Payment in mind, it's even more important that these maps are complete and accurate."

This year's deadline for claims is May 17. Help and information is available from the Rural Payments Agency in Northallerton (01609 773751).


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